• IRK Magazine

Vermeer and the Masters of Genre Paintings at the Musée du Louvre


You may be asking why IRK Magazine is writing about a 17th century painting exhibition but the famous dutch painter Jan Vermeer is one of the most influential painters on photography and cinema today. His use of light to set a mood has even become a term, Vermeer lighting, to describe the lighting of high contrast photographs with a singular source of light.


Johannes Vermeer, The Milkmaid , ca. 1657-1658. Oil on canvas. 45.5 x 41 cm. Amsterdam, Rijksmuseum © Amsterdam, The Rijksmuseum

This wonderful exhibition is not just another ode to Vermeer and his singular genius. Actually this exhibition is there to prove that Vermeer was influenced by other artists of his time to create his wonderful stories. It does not diminish his work but instead shows us that art is not created in a bubble and that looking toward other artists is a natural process.

“Vermeer and the Masters of Genre Paintings“ at the Musée du Louvre is in collaboration with the National Gallery of Ireland in Dublin and the National gallery of art in Washington the Louvre. Through comparisons with works of other artists of the Golden Age, including Gerrit Dou, Gerard ter Borch, Jan Steen, Pieter de Hooch, Gabriel Metsu, Caspar Netscher, and Frans van Mieris, the exhibition brings to light that Vermeer was influenced by his compatriot artists specializing in the depiction of everyday life. Although they were painting in different cities in the Netherlands, their paintings show distinct similarities in style, subject, composition, and technique. This exhibition proves that this rivalry played its part in defining Vermeer but it also shows through comparison just how unique and important of a painter he was.

If you love 17th century paintings, contemporary art photography or even fashion photography we highly recommend this exhibition. Maybe it will inspire you!

Exhibition venues & dates

20 February - 22 May 2017

Musée du Louvre, Paris

17 June - 17 September 2017

National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin

22 October 2017 - 21 January 2018

National Gallery of Art, Washington DC

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